Last week William Adams of Norman was sentenced to 30-years in prison for going into the Bergy Wind Power Company, shooting a woman and trying to kidnap his estranged wife. But there’s much more to the story.
Edward Adams said his father did what he did, not because he’s evil, but because he struggles with mental illness. And like so many Oklahoma families, he said they tried to get help but couldn’t until it was too late.
“It’s not justice to let a mentally ill man die in a cage,” Edward said.
He said none of this should have happened. 25-days before his father, William, was shot while trying to kidnap his wife from Bergey Wind Power where she worked, the family tried to get him help for his mental illness. He had been threatening to hurt himself and others, so they called police.
“The threats that he’s making, they’re kinda too vague is what they told us,” Edward said.
Less than a month later Adams opened fire at his wife’s office. Edward got an alert on his phone.
“And I dropped my phone and ran around and started crying. Because I knew something bad had happened.I knew that what we were trying to prevent on December 15th had happened.”
At his sentencing Adams shook his head in disbelief listening to the terror in the voices of his victims as they called 911.
“He confessed to me before any court things, he was never going to kill anybody. He was never going in there to hurt anybody except for himself. He thought he had lost his family. And he wanted some resemblance of comfort when he died. And that was his logic. He just wanted his wife there when he died,” Edward said. “I’m not saying I want him released from prison tomorrow. But I think he deserves to prove he’s not the man who walked into that building. I think he deserves that chance.”
Now that Adams is in jail and being treated for his mental illness, his son said he is lucid.
“My dad’s in a cage right now. I have the best relationship with him I’ve ever had. Because of how well he’s doing. Because of how clear headed he is. I have the best relationship with my father I’ve had in 28-years, and he’s behind a wall,” Edward said. “This didn’t have to happen. This could have been avoided.”
In court Adams told the judge he has congestive heart failure and has less than five years to live, so a 30-year sentence is a death sentence.